Navigation Links
Newly-identified exercise gene could help with depression

New Haven, Conn.Boosting an exercise-related gene in the brain works as a powerful anti-depressant in micea finding that could lead to a new anti-depressant drug target, according to a Yale School of Medicine report in Nature Medicine.

The VGF exercise-related gene and target for drug development could be even better than chemical antidepressants because it is already present in the brain, said Ronald Duman, professor of psychiatry and senior author of the study.

Depression affects 16 percent of the population in the United States, at a related cost of $83 billion each year. Currently available anti-depressants help 65 percent of patients and require weeks to months before the patients experience relief.

Duman said it is known that exercise improves brain function and mental health, and provides protective benefits in the event of a brain injury or disease, but how this all happens in the brain is not well understood. He said the fact that existing medications take so long to work indicates that some neuronal adaptation or plasticity is needed.

He and his colleagues designed a custom microarray that was optimized to show small changes in gene expression, particularly in the brains hippocampus, a limbic structure highly sensitive to stress hormones, depression, and anti-depressants.

They then compared the brain activity of sedentary mice to those who were given running wheels. The researchers observed that the mice with wheels within one week were running more than six miles each night. Four independent array analyses of the mice turned up 33 hippocampal exercise-regulated genes27 of which had never been identified before.

The action of one gene in particularVGFwas greatly enhanced by exercise. Moreover, administering VGF functioned like a powerful anti-depressant, while blocking VGF inhibited the effects of exercise and induced depressive-like behavior in the mice.

Identification of VGF provides a mechanism by which exercise produces antidepressant effects, Duman said. This information further supports the benefits of exercise and provides a novel target for the development of new antidepressants with a completely different mechanism of action than existing medications.


Contact: Jacqueline Weaver
Yale University

Related biology news :

1. Obesity and lack of exercise could enhance the risk of pancreatic cancer
2. Exercise improves thinking, reduces diabetes risk in overweight children
3. Canadian Society of Exercise Physiology Annual Scientific Conference
4. Newly created cancer stem cells could aid breast cancer research
5. Finding that 1-in-a-billion that could lead to disease
6. 60 second test could help early diagnosis of common brain diseases
7. Auto immune response creates barrier to fertility; could be a step in speciation
8. Paracetamol, one of most used analgesics, could slow down bone growth
9. Drug could improve pregnancy outcomes in wider range of women with insulin resistance
10. Thousands of starving children could be restored to health with peanut butter program
11. Nanotech could make solar energy as easy and cheap as growing grass
Post Your Comments:
(Date:5/12/2016)... 2016 , a brand of ... results from the Q1 wave of its quarterly wearables ... consumers, receptivity to a program where they would receive ... insurance company. "We were surprised to see ... Michael LaColla , CEO of Troubadour Research, "primarily because ...
(Date:4/28/2016)... BANGALORE, India , April 28, 2016 ... subsidiary of Infosys (NYSE: INFY ), and Samsung ... global partnership that will provide end customers with a ... and payment services.      (Logo: ... for financial services, but it also plays a fundamental part ...
(Date:4/26/2016)... 2016 Research and Markets has ... Market 2016-2020"  report to their offering.  , ,     ... The analysts forecast the global multimodal biometrics market ... the period 2016-2020.  Multimodal biometrics is ... as the healthcare, BFSI, transportation, automotive, and government ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:6/23/2016)... 23, 2016   Boston Biomedical , an ... designed to target cancer stemness pathways, announced that ... Orphan Drug Designation from the U.S. Food and ... cancer, including gastroesophageal junction (GEJ) cancer. Napabucasin is ... inhibit cancer stemness pathways by targeting STAT3, and ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... June 23, 2016 , ... ... Plate® YM (Yeast and Mold) microbial test has received AOAC Research Institute approval ... of microbial tests introduced last year,” stated Bob Salter, Vice President of Regulatory ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... , ... June 23, 2016 , ... ... announced the launch of the Supplyframe Design Lab . Located in Pasadena, ... explore the future of how hardware projects are designed, built and brought to ...
(Date:6/23/2016)...  Blueprint Bio, a company dedicated to identifying, protecting ... has closed its Series A funding round, according to ... "We have received a commitment from Forentis Fund that ... meet our current goals," stated Matthew Nunez . ... complete validation on the current projects in our pipeline, ...
Breaking Biology Technology: